Saturday, February 04, 2017

Citizen Cider -Love These Guys! (VT)

I have been lucky. Between my friend Todd Trazkos and my brother-in-law Robin Hoover both turned me onto Citizen Cider early on. And with a few tops to the Woodstock general store a few years in a row, I have been lucky enough to keep my self steadily if occasionally supplied with their incredible and inventive ciders!

Justin Heilenbach, Bryan Holmes and Kris Nelson founded Citizen Cider in 2010. Kris was working as a wine salesmen, Bryan as a chemist and Justin as a small farmer. They started pressing sweet cider in Kris’s barn and fermenting test batches of hard cider in Bryan’s basement. They made some pretty good stuff, they thought, and decided to take a chance. They leased a production space at Fort Ethan Allen in Essex, Vermont. They made a deal with Stan and Mary Pratt of Happy Valley Orchard in Middlebury, Vermont to handle all the cider pressing. In the late fall of 2011 Stan pressed out 5000 gallons of sweet cider and handed it over to the guys. The rest is history.

In short, it's hard not to like these guys! And their cider! I saw them last year at Taste Camp Vermont, and tasted a further continuation of what they've been up to, and it was thrilling!

Citizen Cider Unified Press is made from 100% local apples ONLY! Unified Press is Citizen Cider’s flagship cider. The apples pressed at Happy Valley Orchard in Middlebury, VT, and the cider was made in Burlington and Middlebury, VT. This is an off-dry, crisp cider. It's clean, refreshing and honest. Nice and light and effervescent, it's easy to drink, and pairs well with almost any kind of food. Great with burgers and hot dogs, but easily could be paired with local Vermont cheeses for a more elegant expression as well! Fantastic!

According to Wikipedia: Fort Ethan Allen was a United States Army installation in Vermont, named for American Revolutionary War figure Ethan Allen. Established as a cavalry post in 1894, today it is the center of a designated national historic district straddling the town line between Colchester and Essex. Locally, it is known simply as "The Fort", and now houses a variety of businesses, academic institutions, and residential areas.

The guys at Citizen Cider dedicates this cider to the honorable and fully infamous mayor of the only non-town in America, Fort Ethan Allen, USA.  As with Unified, the juice pressed at Happy Valley Orchard in Middlebury, VT and then crafted in Burlington & Middlebury, VT. According to the guys, the mayor likes his cider with a ginger nip, so in an effort to ensure local harmony and bribe a happy mayor, they make this stuff. The locals like it too! I lov the trend of adding a hint of ginger to cider. It gives the cider a dry pop at the end.It's not over powering, it just had a little pepper pop at the end. Great with food! Almost any kind of Asian dish!!! Fantastic!

Everytime I drink smething fromthese guys, I am always impressed!

Here's another review I did of them two years ago: